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Labour puts councils between rock and hard place

John Carter MP
National Party Local Government Spokesman

22 June 2006

Labour puts councils between rock and hard place

National Party Local Government spokesman John Carter expects councils will be forced to devote scarce ratepayer resources to enforcing Labour’s toothless dog microchipping legislation.

“Rates have been escalating across the country thanks to costs being passed on down the chain by Labour. Make no mistake, microchipping is bound to be another one of those burdens that ratepayers will have to share.”

Mr Carter says territorial authorities will have to decipher what qualifies as a working dog, and inevitably there will be new costs because of the extra layers of bureaucracy needed to enforce and administer the new dog rules.

“Though farmers can celebrate a significant victory, spare a thought for the older Kiwi on a fixed income who will still have to pay this new dog tax, thanks to the inflexibility of political parties that refused to stop this law in its tracks.

“Dog control officers and animal shelters should be prepared for brisk business. Many irresponsible owners will simply dump their dogs to avoid the introduction of microchipping, while others will just continue to ignore the rules as they do now.”

Mr Carter is calling on councils to make sure the Labour policy-makers responsible for the microchipping agenda are fully aware of the difficulties they face in implementing the rules.

“If ratepayers and councils face extra costs because of this, they should make that very clear,” says Mr Carter.


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